Ah, the subcompact crossover. For the past few years, we’ve seen a big jump in this segment in terms of not just sales, but variety and features. It’s an incredibly competitive market to take part in, and it’s almost always a cutthroat battle when it comes to head-to-head specifications and numbers. We hold these vehicles close to our hearts because they tick all the boxes we need as daily drivers.
For one, some of them are incredibly stylish and help stand out from the usual sea of vehicles. Ground clearance is almost always better than a regular sedan, leading to some peace of mind when the rainy season starts, and the versatility and practicality is good since every centimeter is maximized for cargo space and then some. All of this, and they are still agile and small enough to wander around our gridlocked streets and pass narrow alleyways to get to our destination. They can also offer advanced safety features and can keep occupants safe in the event of an accident, or even prevent an accident from happening in the first place. So, as you can kinda tell, the subcompact crossover segment has a car for anyone. However, some subcompact crossovers rise above the rest, and those that we find pretty awesome will be found in this list in no particular order. You will not go wrong with any of the subcompact crossovers in this list. So without further ado, let’s begin.
1. Suzuki Vitara
Call it a comeback, if you will, but Suzuki’s entry in the subcompact crossover segment is a definite looker. It stays true to its roots by adopting the clamshell hood and two tone color options (just like the first Vitaras), and has nice modern touches such as LED running lights and HID headlights. The interior is decent, and the body colored plastics are a cool touch. The sunroof is generous, and is great to use on cool, clear nights. The gigantic touchscreen could be a plus or a minus to many, but there’s no denying that it works pretty well. The 1.6 liter engine is zippy at 115 hp and 156 Nm of torque and surprisingly efficient, which you can read more about in this review. The icing on the cake is that it’s priced very well, starting at just P913,000.
2. Ford Ecosport
The Ecosport might as well be the bread and butter of Ford, breaking into the crossover scene at the right time and the right price. There’s no denying that the practicality and the high ground clearance of the Ecosport is a main consideration for buyers. The bonus is that it does all you need in a very compact package. Now also powered by the famed 1.0L EcoBoost engine, you get good fuel efficiency, and respectable power figures. For doing daily tasks and making rounds in the urban jungle, the Ecosport could very well be your best buddy. With a wide range of options, the Ecosport is priced competitively and starts at P918,000.
3. Honda BR-V
One of Honda Philippines’ best-sellers in the country offers up two more seats than the competition and offers a handsome exterior. The interior is one of the best for this price range, and everything is well placed and is made well. Higher variants get leather touches and snazzier buttons and dials. This seven-seater is powered by the familiar 1.5 liter that’s good for 120 hp and 145 Nm of torque and is mated to a CVT. Read our thoughts on the top spec version of this car here. Overall, if seven seats is a must, the BR-V can handle your road trip duties and still be flexible enough to take as a daily driver. The Honda BR-V starts at P1,030,000.
4. Mazda CX-3
Now we’re getting a little bit pricier, as Mazda’s entry in the subcompact crossover category is priced at P1,280,000. What you get, though, is one of the best looking subcompact crossovers on the market today, with the striking Kodo design theme working wonders. On the inside, the CX-3 features a no-nonsense interior with an easy to use rotary interface and an available heads up display (HUD). Under the hood, the CX-3 is powered by 2.0 liter SkyActiv gasoline engine that produces 148 hp and 192 Nm of torque and is paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission. In the city, the CX-3 is easy to drive due to its light steering and handling feel, and on the open roads, the CX-3 also shines by providing good driver feedback. The CX-3 can be had in front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive variants.
5. Subaru XV
Known for their all-wheel drive performance and some of the safest cars in their respective classes, Subaru and their XV is no different. Already a solid choice with a 2.0 liter engine with 154 hp and 196 Nm of torque connected to a CVT, the XV gets a significant bump in safety with the inclusion of Subaru EyeSight. EyeSight brings to the table a wide array of active safety features, such as pre-collision braking, adaptive cruise control, lane keep assist, and lane departure warning, making the XV one of the safest vehicles on the road today. Combined with great driving dynamics and a sporty yet comfortable ride, and it’s no wonder the XV is Subaru’s volume seller. The XV base model starts at P1,418,000, but the EyeSight variant is well worth the investment at P1,668,000.